The LeasePlan Group, which now had operations in 26 countries around the world, rebranded itself to communicate its international presence and strength. In September 2000 LeasePlan Germany launched its new logo and corporate identity at the IAA Utility Vehicles fair. LeasePlan also proved to be very innovative in the e-commerce segment and it launched “Plan8Push” internet reporting. One of the company’s employees celebrated 25 years of service with the company.
LeasePlan Germany was proud to act as mentor, providing advice and support to the new Polish LeasePlan start-up. LeasePlan received the Fair Wear & Tear certificate from RWTÜV Anlagentechnik GmbH.
At the beginning of the year, LeasePlan launched e-manager, an online vehicle configurator and price calculator, and a contemporary online communication platform for fleet managers was born. On 31 December 2002 there were 280 staff working in Neuss, Hamburg, Frankfurt and Stuttgart catering to the needs of around 1,100 customers and managing a total fleet of 58,379 vehicles.
To emphasise its ties with the LeasePlan brand, the Dutch holding company ABN AMRO Lease Holding N. V. changed its name to LeasePlan Corporation N. V. In spring, LeasePlan launched the new online platform for drives, e-driver. Wolfgang E. Reinhold left the company after 14 years as Managing Director of LeasePlan Germany to take up a new function in the LeasePlan Corporation. His successor was Jan Hein Bax, former Managing Director of LeasePlan (Switzerland) AG.
LeasePlan Germany started out the new year with 60,000 vehicles in its contract portfolio. In November the ownership structure of LeasePlan Corporation N.V. changed. The new shareholders were the Volkswagen Group (50% of shares), the Mubadala Development Company and the Olayan Group (each with 25% of shares).
In summer, an upgraded version of our fleet software and our accident management service were launched. LeasePlan ended the year with 68,300 vehicles and a change of executive management. Jan Hein Bax stood down as CEO of LeasePlan in December 2005. His successor was Johan Ragnar Friman, who had previously been the successful Managing Director of LeasePlan Finland for many years.
LeasePlan responded to the increasing concerns about climate change by introducing ecologically and economically practical fleet initiatives. The vast interest in our “Gas as a fleet fuel alternative” information event which took place in Neuss in January indicates how important environmental protection is for our customers. At the end of the year, our leased assets passed the one billion euro threshold for the first time. It’s an impressive figure based on the contract portfolio of 71,700 vehicles at 31 December 2006.
In August, FleetReporting was launched as the modern version of our previous cost reporting tool, Plan8Push. LeasePlan also launched a web portal in December providing convenient access to all fleet softwares via one single login.
2007 was a very successful year. We closed it with a contract portfolio of 77,000 vehicles and above-average growth of almost 8 percent.
LeasePlan was the first fleet management company to introduce electronic insurance confirmation processes in March. LeasePlan continued to grow. There were now 320 people working for the company throughout Germany and the headquarters in Neuss were getting too small again. The Neuss branch which houses the sales and customer support teams, and the LeasePlan International team, moved into the new headquarters in nearby Carl-Schurz-Strasse. LeasePlan continued to expand internationally and a new subsidiary was founded in Mexico.
Crises in the financial sector and the used car market overshadow the entire year. LeasePlan responded to the situation with innovative approaches. In summer we launched our LeasePlan Go brand for small companies and the Used Car Outlet on Hammer Landstrasse in Neuss. We launched our e-damage online accident reporting tool and concluded new cooperation agreements with tyre chains, with the unique result in the German market of the concentrated relocation of approx. 10,000 sets of tyres. All these measures resulted in added value for our customers.
So LeasePlan closed out a challenging year with satisfactory growth and a contract portfolio of 87,000 vehicles.